Many RPG systems use dice rolls or other random elements.
A role-playing game (RPG) is a game in which players assume the roles of characters in a fictional setting. Players take responsibility for acting out these roles within a narrative, either through literal acting, or through a process of structured decision-making or character development. Actions taken within many games succeed or fail according to a formal system of rules and guidelines.
There are several forms of RPGs. The original form, sometimes called the tabletop RPG, is conducted through discussion. Several varieties of RPGs also exist in electronic media, such as multi-player text-basedMUDs and their graphics-based successors, massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs). Role-playing games also include single-player offlinerole-playing video games in which players control a character or team who undertake quests, and may include capabilities that advance using statistical mechanics. Media attention has both increased sales and stigmatized certain games. In thirty years the genre has grown from a few hobbyists and boutique publishers to an economically significant part of the games industry, though grass-roots and small business involvement remains substantial. Games industry company Hasbro purchased fantasy game publisher Wizards of the Coast in 1998 for an estimated $325 million.
D&D departs from traditional wargaming and assigns each player a specific character to play instead of a military formation. These characters embark upon imaginary adventures within a fantasy setting. A Dungeon Master serves as the game's referee, while also maintaining the setting in which the adventures occur and playing the role of the inhabitants. The characters solve dilemmas, engage in battles and gather treasure and knowledge. Dungeons & Dragons is known beyond the game for other D&D-branded products, references in popular culture and some of the controversies that have surrounded it.
...that Schmidt Spiel & Freizeit GmbH wanted to take Dungeons & Dragons under license, but then decided that it would be too expensive, so they asked Ulrich Kiesow to provide an alternative. Kiesow proposed his private game, Aventuria which was renamed The Dark Eye (German original: Das Schwarze Auge) and would become one of Germany's most famous role-playing games.
In the 1960s, Gygax created an organization of wargaming clubs and founded the Gen Congaming convention. In 1971, he helped develop Chainmail, a miniatures wargame based on medieval warfare. He co-founded the company Tactical Studies Rules (TSR, Inc.) with childhood friend Don Kaye in 1973. The following year, he and Dave Arneson created Dungeons & Dragons, which expanded on his work on Chainmail and included elements of the fantasy stories he loved as a child. In the same year, he founded The Dragon, a magazine based around the new game. In 1977, Gygax began work on a more comprehensive version of the game, called Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. Gygax designed numerous manuals for the game system, as well as several pre-packaged adventures called "modules" that gave a person running a D&D game (the "Dungeon Master") a rough script and ideas on how to run a particular gaming scenario. In 1983, he worked to license the D&D product line into the successful Dungeons & Dragons cartoon series.
After leaving TSR in 1985 over issues with its new majority owner, Gygax continued to create role-playing game titles independently, beginning with the multi-genre Dangerous Journeys in 1992. He designed another gaming system called Lejendary Adventure, released in 1999. In 2005, Gygax was involved in the Castles & Crusades role-playing game, which was conceived as a hybrid between D&D's third edition and the original version of the game conceived by Gygax.
Gygax was married twice and had six children. In 2004, he suffered two strokes, narrowly avoided a subsequent heart attack, and was then diagnosed with an abdominal aortic aneurysm, from which he died in March 2008.